City’s children taught about internet safety

University of Portsmouth celebrates staff and students

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CHILDREN in Portsmouth were given a vital lesson about internet safety yesterday.

Schools across the city joined this year’s national Safer Internet Day.

It aims to raise awareness about the dangers youngsters can face using social media, from cyber bullying to online grooming.

Carolyn Bunting is from Internet Matters, which organises the day.

She said research showed that while children recognised ‘the internet can be a risky place’, too many of them are ‘not protected’ when on social media.

Latest figures show more than 80 per cent of children aged between 10 and 12 have at least one social networking account.

Just under half of children succeeded in setting their social media profiles to ‘private’, while almost a fifth have given out personal information like their full name, homes address and phone number to people online.

Simon Hayes, Hampshire police and crime commissioner, said parents needed to be cautious.

‘The internet has become integral in all our lives, but particularly for young people, so it’s important to know how to stay safe online while making the most of the opportunities offered,’ he added.